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Center for the Study of the Early Modern World

The Center for the Study of the Early Modern World promotes interdisciplinary and multidisciplinary approaches to historical cultures around the world between the waning of feudalism and the arrival of global industrial capitalism, from the 1300s to the end of the 1800s. Characterized by new global aspirations as well as new modes of domination, resistance, and conflict, this period yielded significant technological transformations and cultural inventions whose study contributes to the historical understanding of the modern world.

Students take courses in a wide range of departments in the humanities and social sciences and from faculty affiliated with the Center for the Study of the Early Modern World.

The Center, which is part of the Cogut Institute for the Humanities, also hosts a lecture series, a graduate colloquium, and interdisciplinary opportunities for graduate students. Partnerships with the John Hay Library, the John Carter Brown Library, the Bell Gallery, as well as the RISD Museum and the Folger Institute in Washington, DC play a significant part in its activities.

For additional information, please visit the department's website at https://earlymodernworld.brown.edu/.

Course usage information

EMOW 0050M. Difficult Relations? Judaism and Christianity from the Middle Ages until the Present (JUDS 0050M).

Interested students must register for JUDS 0050M.

Course usage information

EMOW 0062. Dutch and Flemish Art: Visual Culture of the Netherlands in the Seventeenth Century (HIAA 0062).

Interested students must register for HIAA 0062.

Fall EMOW0062 S01 18808 Arranged 'To Be Arranged'
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EMOW 0063. Antisemitism: A History (JUDS 0063).

Interested students must register for JUDS 0063.

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EMOW 0081. Architecture of the House Through Space and Time (HIAA 0081).

Interested students must register for HIAA 0081.

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EMOW 0100C. Altered States (ENGL 0100C).

Interested students must register for ENGL 0100C.

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EMOW 0150H. Foods and Drugs in History (HIST 0150H).

Interested students must register for HIST 0150H.

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EMOW 0150Z. Hamlet/Post-Hamlet (ENGL 0150Z).

Interested students must register for ENGL0150Z.

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EMOW 0211. Art of Empire: The Early Modern Hispanic World (HIAA 0211).

Interested students must register for HIAA 0211.

Course usage information

EMOW 0233. Colonial Latin America (HIST 0233).

Interested students must register for HIST 0233.

Fall EMOW0233 S01 18840 Arranged 'To Be Arranged'
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EMOW 0286A. History of Medicine I: Medical Traditions in the Old World before 1700 (HIST 0286A).

Interested students must register for HIST 0286A.

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EMOW 0310. Japan's Floating World (EAST 0402).

Interested students must register for EAST 0402.

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EMOW 0310A. Shakespeare (ENGL 0310A).

Interested students must register for ENGL 0310A.

Fall EMOW0310A S01 18837 Arranged 'To Be Arranged'
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EMOW 0522G. An Empire and Republic: The Dutch Golden Age (HIST 0522G).

Interested students must register for HIST 0522G.

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EMOW 0522O. What is Enlightenment? (HIST0522O).

Interested students must register for HIST 0522O.

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EMOW 0550. Painters, Builders, and Bankers in Early Modern Italy (HIAA 0550).

Interested students must register for HIAA 0550.

Spr EMOW0550 S01 26722 Arranged 'To Be Arranged'
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EMOW 0580M. The Age of Revolutions, 1760-1824 (HIST 0580M).

Interested students must register for HIST 0580M.

Fall EMOW0580M S01 18842 Arranged 'To Be Arranged'
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EMOW 0610E. Crisis and Identity in Mexico, 1519-1968 (COLT 0610E).

Interested students must register for COLT 0610E.

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EMOW 0630. Cultural History of the Netherlands in a Golden Age and a Global Age (HIAA 0630).

Interested students must register for HIAA 0630.

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EMOW 0632. Mural Painting in Mexico (HIAA 0632).

Interested students must register for HIAA 0632.

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EMOW 0660. Giotto to Watteau:Introduction to the Art of Europe from Renaissance to French Revolution(HIAA 0660).

Interested students must register for HIAA 0660.

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EMOW 0710I. New Worlds: Reading Spaces and Places in Colonial Latin America (COLT 0710I).

Interested students must register for COLT 0710I.

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EMOW 0810H. How Not to Be a Hero (COLT 0810H).

Interested students must register for COLT 0810H.

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EMOW 0855. The Bhagavad Gītā (CLAS 0855).

Interested students must register for CLAS 0855.

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EMOW 0910. On the Dawn of Modernity (POBS 0910).

Interested students must register for POBS 0910.

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EMOW 0910A. Medieval and Renaissance Music (MUSC 0910).

Interested students must register for MUSC 0910.

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EMOW 0920. Baroque and Classic Music (MUSC0920).

Interested students must register for MUSC 0920.

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EMOW 1000B. Littérature et culture: Chevaliers, sorcières, philosophes, et poètes (FREN 1000B).

Interested students must register for FREN 1000B.

Fall EMOW1000B S01 18836 Arranged 'To Be Arranged'
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EMOW 1010. Dante in English Translation: Dante's World and the Invention of Modernity (ITAL 1010).

Interested students must register for ITAL 1010.

Fall EMOW1010 S01 18834 Arranged 'To Be Arranged'
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EMOW 1020. Decameron: Mdvl-Mdrn(ITAL1020).

Interested students must register for ITAL 1020.

Spr EMOW1020 S01 26726 Arranged 'To Be Arranged'
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EMOW 1030B. Modernity, Italian Style (ITAL 1030B).

Interested students must register for ITAL 1030B.

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EMOW 1040. Virgil: Aeneid (LATN 1040B).

Interested students must register for LATN 1040B.

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EMOW 1040B. Théâtre du XVIIe siècle (FREN 1040B).

Interested students must register for FREN 1040B.

Fall EMOW1040B S01 18812 Arranged 'To Be Arranged'
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EMOW 1040C. Le Grand Siècle à l'écran (FREN 1040C).

Interested students must register for FREN 1040C.

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EMOW 1040D. Molière et son monde (FREN 1040D).

Interested students must register for FREN 1040D.

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EMOW 1112. China's Early Modern Empires (HIST 1112).

Interested students must register for HIST 1112.

Fall EMOW1112 S01 18861 Arranged 'To Be Arranged'
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EMOW 1120G. Reading Humanist Latin Texts (LATN 1120G).

Interested students must register for LATN 1120G.

Fall EMOW1120G S01 19019 Arranged 'To Be Arranged'
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EMOW 1160. Classics of Indian Literature (CLAS 1160).

Interested students must register for CLAS 1160.

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EMOW 1216. The Paradox of Early Modern Europe (HIST 1216).

Interested students must register for HIST 1216.

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EMOW 1240A. Fashion and Fiction in the Early Modern Hispanic World (HISP 1240A).

Interested students must register for HISP 1240A.

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EMOW 1262. Women, Gender, Feminism in Early Modern Italy (ITAL 1262).

Interested students must register for ITAL 1262.

Fall EMOW1262 S01 18815 Arranged 'To Be Arranged'
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EMOW 1262M. Truth on Trial: Justice in Italy, 1400-1800 (HIST 1262M).

Interested students must register for HIST 1262M.

Spr EMOW1262M S01 26626 Arranged 'To Be Arranged'
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EMOW 1266C. English History, 1529-1660 (HIST 1266C).

Interested students must register for HIST 1266C.

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EMOW 1266D. British History, 1660-1800 (HIST 1266D).

Interested students must register for HIST 1266D.

Spr EMOW1266D S01 26598 Arranged 'To Be Arranged'
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EMOW 1272D. The French Revolution (HIST 1272D).

Interested students must register for HIST 1272D.

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EMOW 1310A. Early Mdrn Wmn Wrt (ENGL1310A).

Interested students must register for ENGL 1310A.

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EMOW 1311G. Shakespeare, Love and Friendship (ENGL 1311G).

Interested students must register for ENGL 1311G.

Course usage information

EMOW 1311M. Renaissance Poetry and Its Kinds (ENGL 1311M).

Interested students must register for ENGL 1311M.

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EMOW 1311N. England and the Renaissance.

Interested students must register for ENGL 1311N.

Fall EMOW1311N S01 18818 Arranged 'To Be Arranged'
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EMOW 1320. Great Authors and Works of Italian Renaissance (ITAL 1320).

Interested students must register for ITAL 1320.

Fall EMOW1320 S01 18833 Arranged 'To Be Arranged'
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EMOW 1340. History of the Andes from Incas to Evo Morales (HIST 1340).

Interested students must register for HIST 1340.

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EMOW 1361G. Tolkien and the Renaissance (ENGL 1361G).

Interested students must register for ENGL 1361G.

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EMOW 1361L. Milton (ENGL 1361L).

Interested students must register for ENGL 1361L.

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EMOW 1361N. Evil Plays: Shakespeare and Contemporaries (ENGL 1361N).

Interested students must register for ENGL 1361N.

Spr EMOW1361N S01 26625 Arranged 'To Be Arranged'
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EMOW 1410I. Sorcellerie et Renaissance: le sort de la sorcière (FREN 1410I).

Interested students must register for FREN 1410I.

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EMOW 1410T. L'expérience des réfugiés/immigrés (FREN 1410T).

Interested students must register for FREN 1410T.

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EMOW 1411. Illustrating Indigenous Knowledge (HIAA 1411).

Interested students must register for HIAA 1411.

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EMOW 1430. Truth on Trial (HIST 1430).

Interested students must register for HIST 1430.

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EMOW 1430B. Art and Exemplarity in Medieval and Early Modern Literature (COLT 1430B).

Interested students must register for COLT 1430B.

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EMOW 1435. Theater, Spectacle and the City in Italy, 1400-1600(ITAL1435).

Interested students must register for ITAL 1435.

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EMOW 1440. The Ottomans: Faith, Law, Empire (HIST 1440).

Interested students must register for HIST 1440.

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EMOW 1440E. The Body in Medieval Art (HIAA 1440E).

Interested students must register for HIAA 1440E.

Course usage information

EMOW 1500A. Major Masters and Repertoires of Music: Bach (MUSC 1500A).

Interested students must register for MUSC 1500A.

Course usage information

EMOW 1510A. Jane Austen and Her Predecessors (ENGL 1510A).

Interested students must register for ENGL 1510A.

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EMOW 1550C. Dreaming of Food in the Early Modern World (HIAA 1550C).

Interested students must register for HIAA 1550C.

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EMOW 1560A. Italy and the Mediterranean (HIAA 1560A).

Interested students must register for HIAA 1560A.

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EMOW 1561C. Swift and His Contemporaries (ENGL 1561C).

Interested students must register for ENGL 1561C.

Course usage information

EMOW 1561K. Restoration and Eighteenth-Century Drama (ENGL 1561K).

Interested students must register for ENGL 1561K.

Fall EMOW1561K S01 18838 Arranged 'To Be Arranged'
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EMOW 1580. Word, Image and Power in Renaissance Italy (ITAL 1580).

Interested students must register for ITAL 1580.

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EMOW 1600A. Bosch and Bruegel: Art Turns the World Upside Down (HIAA 1600A).

Interested students must register for HIAA 1600A.

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EMOW 1600B. Caravaggio (HIAA 1600B).

Interested students must register for HIAA 1600B.

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EMOW 1610. The Divina Commedia: Inferno and Purgatorio (ITAL 1610).

Interested students must register for ITAL 1610.

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EMOW 1620. Arts Between Europe and the World 1500-1700 (HIAA 1620).

Interested students must register for HIAA 1620.

Course usage information

EMOW 1624. Indians, Colonists, and Africans in New England (ANTH 1624).

Interested students must register for ANTH 1624.

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EMOW 1631. Authority, Identity, and Visual Culture in Colonial Latin America (HIAA 1631).

Interested students must register for HIAA 1631.

Course usage information

EMOW 1701C. The First Scientific Americans: Exploring Nature in Latin America, 1500-1800 (STS 1701C).

Interested students must register for STS 1701C.

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EMOW 1813N. Early Modern Women's Writing (COLT 1813N)..

Interested students must register for COLT 1813N.

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EMOW 1825F. Nature, Knowledge, and Power in Early Modern Europe (HIST 1825F).

Interested students must register for HIST 1825F.

Fall EMOW1825F S01 18809 Arranged 'To Be Arranged'
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EMOW 1825H. Science, Medicine and Technology in the 17th Century (HIST 1825H).

Interested students must register for HIST 1825H.

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EMOW 1954J. The History of the Book in the Americas and Beyond (HIST 1954J).

Interested students must register for HIST 1954J.

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EMOW 1961D. Heaven Above, Suzhou and Hangzhou Below: Urban Culture in Early Modern China (HIST 1961D).

Interested students must register for HIST 1961D.

Fall EMOW1961D S01 18863 Arranged 'To Be Arranged'
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EMOW 1964A. Age of Impostors: Fraud, Identification, and the Self in Early Modern Europe(HIST 1964A).

Interested students must register for HIST 1964A.

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EMOW 1964B. The Enchanted World: Magic, Angels, and Demons in Early Modern Europe (HIST 1964B).

Interested students must register for HIST 1964B.

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EMOW 1964D. Women in Early Modern England (HIST 1964D).

Interested students must register for HIST 1964D.

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EMOW 1964F. Early Modern Ireland (HIST 1964F).

Interested students must register for HIST 1964F.

Fall EMOW1964F S01 18806 Arranged 'To Be Arranged'
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EMOW 1964K. Descartes' World (HIST 1964K).

Interested students must register for HIST 1964K.

Spr EMOW1964K S01 26623 Arranged 'To Be Arranged'
Course usage information

EMOW 1967T. History of the Andes from the Incas to Evo Morales (HIST 1967T).

Interested students must register for HIST 1967T.

Course usage information

EMOW 1971U. Kabbalah: An Introduction to Jewish Mysticism (HMAN 1971U).

Interested students must register for HMAN 1971U.

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EMOW 1975R. Religion from Below (HMAN 1975R).

Interested students must register for HMAN 1975R.

Course usage information

EMOW 1980. Independent Study in EMOW.

Tutorial instruction on a topic in the Renaissance or early modern period, supervised by a member of the core faculty. This number may be used by concentrators for the required Independent Project undertaken in the junior or senior year. Section numbers vary by professor; instructor permission required.

Course usage information

EMOW 2050. Microhistory (ITAL 2050)..

Interested students must register for ITAL 2050.

Spr EMOW2050 S01 26721 Arranged 'To Be Arranged'
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EMOW 2100. The Ancient Near East: Early Modern Intellectual Histories (ASYR 2100)..

Interested students must register for ASYR 2100.

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EMOW 2110K. Vision and Visualization in Literature: The Rhetoric of Enargeia (CLAS 2110K).

Interested students must register for CLAS 2110K.

Course usage information

EMOW 2130R. Penser et écrire le non-humain au XVIIème siècle (FREN 2130R).

Interested students must register for FREN 2130R.

Course usage information

EMOW 2150E. Theories et fictions des Lumieres (FREN 2150E).

Interested students must register for FREN 2150E.

Fall EMOW2150E S01 18844 Arranged 'To Be Arranged'
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EMOW 2160N. Antiquity and Innovation in the Hispanic Renaissance (HISP 2160N).

Interested students must register for HISP 2160N.

Course usage information

EMOW 2350H. The History of Wonder in Colonial Spanish American Lettres (HISP 2350H).

Interested students must register for HISP 2350H.

Course usage information

EMOW 2360Y. Lyric and Ecstasy (ENGL 2360Y).

Interested students must register for ENGL 2360Y.

Course usage information

EMOW 2400R. Tracing Translations: Artistic Migrations and Reinventions in the Early Modern World (HMAN 2400R).

Interested students must register for HMAN 2400R.

Course usage information

EMOW 2400T. Imagining Cities: Early Modern Urban Perspectives (HMAN 2400T).

Interested students must register for HMAN 2400T.

Course usage information

EMOW 2520I. Sor Juana Inés de la Cruz in Her Literary Context (HISP 2520I).

Interested students must register for HISP 2520I.

Course usage information

EMOW 2540D. The Theater that was Rome (HIAA 2540D).

Interested students must register for HIAA 2540D.

Spr EMOW2540D S01 26723 Arranged 'To Be Arranged'
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EMOW 2561V. The Pursuit of Happiness: Transatlantic Literary Culture in the Long Eighteenth Century (ENGL 2561V).

Interested students must register for ENGL 2561V.

Course usage information

EMOW 2600E. Jesuit Global Strategies in Art and Conversion (HIAA 2600E).

Interested students must register for HIAA 2600E.

Spr EMOW2600E S01 26624 Arranged 'To Be Arranged'
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EMOW 2970E. Early Modern Continental Europe - Reading (HIST 2970E).

Interested students must register for HIST 2970E.

Course usage information

EMOW 2971T. Colonial Latin America (HIST 2971T).

Interested students must register for HIST 2971T.

Early Modern World

The Concentration in Early Modern World promotes interdisciplinary and multidisciplinary approaches to historical cultures around the world between the waning of feudalism and the arrival of global industrial capitalism, from the 1300s to the end of the 1800s. Students take courses in a wide range of departments and with faculty affiliated with the Center for the Study of the Early Modern World. Concentrators have the opportunity to be mentored by faculty, staff at the special collections libraries at Brown, and graduate students working on contiguous topics.

Students are invited to take advantage of this breadth of offerings to enhance their understanding of the period, as well as to gain a sense of the uses, limitations, and interrelationships of particular disciplinary approaches.

The Center for the Study of the Early Modern World promotes interdisciplinary and multidisciplinary approaches to historical cultures around the world between the waning of feudalism and the arrival of global industrial capitalism, from the 1300s to the end of the 1800s. Characterized by new global aspirations as well as new modes of domination, resistance, and conflict, this period yielded significant technological transformations and cultural inventions whose study contributes to the historical understanding of the modern world.

Students take courses in a wide range of departments in the humanities and social sciences and from faculty affiliated with the Center. Students are invited to take advantage of this breadth of offerings in order to enhance their understanding of the period as well as to gain a sense of the uses, limitations, and interrelationships of particular disciplinary approaches.

Requirements

Concentrators are required to take a minimum of eight courses. These include the following:

  • Three courses on early modern topics in one field in which the student has primary interest or training, e.g., literature, history of art and architecture, or history.
  • Three courses related to the early modern period chosen from two other fields.
  • A senior project. The senior project constitutes the capstone for all concentrators. Examples of possible senior projects include a senior thesis (roughly equivalent to a senior seminar paper), the staging of an early modern play, the performance of early modern music, or an exhibition. The final project will be developed in consultation with two faculty advisors who work closely with the student. Credit is granted through registration for Independent Study in the department for which the topic of research lies.
  • Other relevant courses of the student's choosing.

In addition, the student must be able to demonstrate a reading knowledge of a relevant modern or ancient language other than English. This language requirement does not count as one of the eight courses.

Under the supervision of the director of the program, students may choose courses from the following:
Dutch and Flemish Art: Visual Culture of the Netherlands in the Seventeenth Century
Altered States
Shakespeare's Present Tense
History of Medicine I: Medical Traditions in the Old World Before 1700
Shakespeare
Shakespeare: The Screenplays
Painters, Builders, and Bankers in Early Modern Italy
Constructing the Eternal City: Popes and Pilgrims in Early Modern Rome
Cultural History of the Netherlands in a Golden Age and a Global Age
New Worlds: Reading Spaces and Places in Colonial Latin America
De l'Amour courtois au désir postmoderne
On the Dawn of Modernity
When Leaders Lie: Machiavelli in International Context
L'univers de la Renaissance: XVe et XVIe siècles
The French Renaissance: The Birth of Modernity?
Pouvoirs de la scène: le théâtre du XVIIe siècle
Le Grand Siècle à l'écran
Molière et son monde
Firing the Canon: Early Modern Women's Writing
The Origins of American Literature
Imagining the Individual in Renaissance England
Restoration and Early Eighteenth-Century Literature
Shakespeare and Company
Shakespearean Tragedy
Between Gods and Beasts: The Renaissance Ovid
Shakespeare and Embodiment
The Many Faces of Casanova
Shakespeare
Italy and the Mediterranean
Word, Image and Power in Early Modern Italy
Collections and Visual Knowledge in Early Modern Europe: 1400-1800
Jews Between Christians and Muslims in the Early Modern World
Science, Medicine and Technology in the 17th Century
Form and Feeling in Renaissance Poetry
Age of Impostors: Fraud, Identification, and the Self in Early Modern Europe
Early Modern Globalization
Independent Study in EMOW
Senecan Tragedy
Corps et esprits libertins
Façons d'aimer: Discourses of Sexuality in Early Modern France
Don Quixote: Contexts and Constructions
Irony and Satire
Thinking with Romance in the Renaissance
Alternative Miltons
Sor Juana Inés de la Cruz in Her Literary Context
Gender Matters

Liberal Learning

This concentration develops aesthetic awareness, close reading skills, collaborative skills, cultural understanding, facility with symbolic languages, historical awareness as well as speaking and writing skills.

Honors

Interested and eligible students petition to write a thesis and the faculty chooses the Honors group for that year from the applications, making every effort to accommodate all eligible proposals. Selection is based upon the quality of the application, the preparedness of the student to undertake the project, and the availability of appropriate advisors for the subject. 

Students accepted in the Honors program sign up for EMOW 1980 in the Fall and again in the Spring, with the section number of their advisor (REMS 1980 will become EMOW 1980 as of Fall 2019). Students must meet regularly with their advisors and second readers throughout the year according to a schedule determined by each student and advisor. Finished drafts of the thesis (which will be about 35 pages in length, not counting bibliography and visual or other supporting materials) will be due to the advisor and second reader on April 1 of the Spring semester. Comments will be returned to the students for final polishing and corrections at that point. Students will receive Honors when both their primary advisor and their second reader have provided written statements in support of the finished project. The finished paper, which should be a polished and revised, edited, professional work of original research, will be made available to the entire Early Modern World faculty for comments. There will be a public presentation of the Honors work at the end of the Spring semester.

Students planning a December graduation will not be eligible for the Honors Thesis program, but they are welcome to work out other ways to pursue projects of independent interest in consultation with an academic advisor.

Students wishing to write an honors thesis must have an A average in the concentration, which means that they will not have received more than one “B” or “S” in any course used for the concentration. Classes taken S/NC may be considered as qualifying the student for Honors if they are marked “S with distinction,” meaning that had the student taken the course for a grade, the grade would have been an “A.” It is advisable for them to have taken at least one class with the person who will advise the thesis, and have already written a research paper before choosing to undertake this year-long writing project. Honors students are strongly encouraged not to take more than 4 classes either semester of their senior year—the Honors class being considered one of the four classes.

Honors Application Process

Applications are due to the Director of Center for the Study of the Early Modern World in mid-April of the student's junior year. Each application shall consist of:

1. A very brief (one or two paragraph) cover letter identifying the most appropriate advisor and second readers, and stating also the student’s preparation for the project. Second readers may be professors who work in areas related to the topic, or in some very special cases (and with the advisor’s approval) may be practitioners with whom the student already worked closely, for example.
2. A two-page double-spaced abstract stating and explaining the topic (subject and argument) of the research to be undertaken, written as clearly as possible.
3. A one-page working bibliography of the most relevant books and major articles to be consulted for the project.
4. A current resumé.
5. A printout of the most recent transcript.